City hires independent investigator

Today, Mayor Coleman announced that the City of Saint Paul has retained Donald M. Lewis, co-founder of the Minneapolis law firm Nilan Johnson Lewis PA and current dean of the Hamline University School of Law, to lead an independent investigation into the tragic landslide at Lilydale Regional Park on May 22, 2013.

Mr. Lewis, in his capacity as Of Counsel attorney to the firm Nilan Johnson Lewis, will be tasked with overseeing an independent review of internal city processes regarding the landslide.

“The City of Saint Paul is committed to getting to the bottom of what happened on that tragic day,” said Saint Paul Mayor Chris Coleman. “Don’s resumé speaks for itself. He is a person of the utmost integrity and his reputation is beyond reproach. I have full faith that he will conduct this independent investigation in a robust and thorough manner. The families of Mohammed and Haysem deserve nothing less.”

Mr. Lewis will assume the investigation on Monday, June 24, 2013 with findings expected within several weeks.

The City of Saint Paul retained Northern Technology Incorporated (NTI), a geo-technical engineering firm with expertise in collapses, on May 23, 2013 to help determine the cause of the collapse. This investigation is ongoing and findings are expected in a few weeks.

Findings from both the NTI report and the independent investigation will be made public upon its completion.